Sucking Wind: The Real-Life Diary of a Couch to 5k (part 1—Easy Street)

WILL RUN FOR WINE | Sucking Wind: The Real-Life Diary of  a Couch to 5k

Week 1, Day 1: 7/28/14

Two days before my 40th Birthday. When did I get so damn old?

I’ve never liked running. My knees hurt and I suck wind within seconds of my feet hitting the pavement at any speed over a power walk. I was the last kid to finish the dreaded mile run around the field in grade school. I was always active, but an athlete—ha—I was the last kid picked for every sport with the exceptions of competitive canoe racing or hiking. Running seems to be the “thing”now, and everyone else is showing off their fitness by not just running, but doing it while sloshing through mud puddles, darting through Disney, or fleeing from zombies. 5ks aren’t enough—no, now they run half marathons (and have the bumper sticker to prove it!). They bring their kids and wear a smile and a tutu. I’m fit—I do yoga, Pilates, and kick butt in toning class—I can improve my cardio and learn to run a measly 3.1 miles. {deep breath}  Okay, so I’ve tried this before over the years and failed miserably. But I will not go gently into “middle age.” I can do this dammit.

I hit the treadmill at the gym after downloading a Couch to 5k app on my phone. Book geek note: Kindles fit nicely on the treadmill’s lip below the TV screen. I started reading Laura Drake’s HER ROAD HOME, which happens to be the first Harlequin Superromance I’ve ever read. Okay, possibly the first Harlequin romance I’ve ever read—I’m branching out—and the damn battery died after 7 minutes. The remaining 23 minutes suck.

5 min warmup | walk 3.7 mph for 90 sec/ run 6 mph for 60 sec x 8 | 5 min cool down

W1 D2: 7/29/14

I actually went back to the gym, sore shins and all. And after a work shift— I’ve never ventured to the gym in the afternoon. Maybe it’s because I just had a mini-meltdown in the orthodontist’s office when they told me kiddo’s replacement retainer would cost me $300. I needed to blow off steam. It didn’t hurt as much as I thought it would (the run, not the potential wallet hit) and my right side didn’t flare up in a gut-busting cramp. Some credit must go to distractingly good reading material—I was glued to HER ROAD HOME the entire time. (I made damn sure that my Kindle was charged!) Reading while running is…challenging…but necessary for the sanity. Note: must grab one of the sweaty fitness or glam magazines stacked by the cardio equipment if I ever suffer a Kindle outage again. Even Maxim articles should be more exciting than daytime TV.

5 min warmup | walk 3.7 mph for 90 sec/ run 6 mph for 60 sec x 8 | 5 min cool down

W1 D3: 8/1/14

So, I’ve been 40 for two days. Can’t say I like it. Feel a midlife crisis approaching. So much I haven’t accomplished, so many dreams I haven’t had the guts to chase down. Maybe that’s why I’m trying to run. Well, that and the muffin-top creeping over my waistband. Felt good at the gym today. Legs didn’t hurt, and my breathing was far more paced. Tiny side stitch. Since I intended to prep my finished manuscript for a contest entry, I listened to Coldplay’s Mylo Xyloto, the official album of the story. Great for running (dancing, too!). Between the tunes and the cowboy romance read, I wanted to keep going AFTER I’D FINISHED the official C2 5K program. So I did. Instead of going 2 miles, I finished a 5k. I amped the last 3 run phases to 2.5 minute sprints.
Came home completely flushed, but I kicked butt today, dammit.

5 min warmup | walk 3.7 mph for 90 sec/ run 6 mph for 60 sec x 8 | plus several 2.5 minute runs++ | completed 5k in 41 minutes (including warmup) | 5 min cool down

W2 D1: 8/2/14

Whoo-hoo! Technically, I’m two days ahead. I’m going on vacation next week, so I feel like I need to cram in running time. Plus I figure I should actually GO to the gym when I’m motivated. Started reading GO DANCING as part of my Contemporary Romance training. Must remember to keep books on my kindle. Not like I don’t have at least 20 or so waiting… Run went well. Did the 1.5 minute runs no problem. Ran the last one for 2.5 minutes, and that was all I had in me. Watched World War Z last night and commented again on why I need to learn to run: so I can survive a zombie attack. (Rule #1 of Zombieland: CARDIO)

5 min warmup | walk 3.7 mph 2 min | run 6 mph 1.5 min | x 6 | 5 min cool down

W2 D2: 8/4/14

Okay, I just realized I stared this a week ago and I’m a bit ahead. Forty-year-olds can still kick butt (while hopefully perking up their aged derriere). I had an infuriating morning dealing with the incompetent staff at Walmart (I’ll spare you the rant) so I was still feeling murderous when I sped to the gym. Put on some Foo Fighters Greatest Hits and jumped on the treadmill. Damn. Running flushes that anger right from your system, almost as if it it’s dripping from your sweat glands. Loud men yelling song lyrics over raging guitars helps too. With the music cranked I ran 2.5 minute sprints instead of 1.5. And I stuck around to complete my 3.1 miles instead of the 2-ish on the program. Take that you Walmart fuckers.

5 min warmup | walk 3.7 mph 2 min | run 6 mph 1.5 min | x 6 | 5 min cool down

W2 D3: M 8/11/14

I just returned from a relaxing yet far too short beach vacation, blissing out with good friends, unhealthy food, and plenty of wine. Something about the ocean always lulls me into a state of tranquility. While staying at the beach house, my only real exercise was a couple of exhilarating kayak runs around the island. Though the gorgeous turquoise waters appeared calm, the currents ran fast, so my upper body got quite a workout. But the lower half—not so much. Anyway, today is back to reality. Kiddo went back to school this morning, I’m starting a new schedule of writing (thanks to Claire Cook’s NEVER TOO LATE: YOUR ROAD TO REINVENTION), and heading back to the gym. Despite my six day break, my run went just peachy. Ran the extra to make my 5k no problemo. The arch of my right foot hurts a little though…

This is going to be easy.

::cue dramatic music::

Famous. Last. Words.

5 min warmup | walk 3.7 mph 2 min | run 6 mph 1.5 min | x 6 | 5 min cool down  (extended to run 5k)

 

2 thoughts on “Sucking Wind: The Real-Life Diary of a Couch to 5k (part 1—Easy Street)

  1. Pingback: Sucking Wind: The Real-Life Diary of a Couch to 5k (part 2—Bumps in the Road) | KerryAnnMorgan.com

  2. Pingback: Sucking Wind: The Real-Life Diary of a Couch to 5k (part 3—Demons and Angels) | KerryAnnMorgan.com

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